Toward a Secret Sky by Heather Maclean (Review)

Toward a Secret Sky
by Heather Maclean
YA Urban Fantasy, Christian, Paranormal
Hardcover & ebook, 368 Pages
April 4th 2017 by Blink


Shortly after 17-year-old Maren Hamilton is orphaned and sent to live with grandparents she’s never met in Scotland, she receives an encrypted journal from her dead mother that makes her and everyone around her a target. It confirms that her parents were employed by a secret, international organization that’s now intent on recruiting her. As Maren works to unravel the clues left behind by her mother, a murderous madness sweeps through the local population, terrorizing her small town. Maren must decide if she’ll continue her parents’ fight or stay behind to save her friends.

With the help of Gavin, an otherworldly mercenary she’s not supposed to fall in love with, and Graham, a charming aristocrat who is entranced with her, Maren races against the clock and around the country from palatial estates with twisted labyrinths to famous cathedrals with booby-trapped subterranean crypts to stay ahead of the enemy and find a cure. Along the way, she discovers the great truth of love: that laying down your life for another isn’t as hard as watching them sacrifice everything for you.

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My Review

TOWARD A SECRET SKY is a story that is part YA version of Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code and part angels versus demons trope. There is plenty of mystery and intrigue and an endearing protagonist to hold readers' attention. Some drama, action, and romance round out the story.

This starts off with heartbreak as Maren deals with the loss of her mother. There's almost an immediate connection with her. Then you're taken along a journey with her as she experiences a new country. I liked Maren and her grandparents. I also liked Jo, who is a terrific friend and the realistic high school scene.

The mix of different aspects in the story worked really well. I liked that there was some clue following, mystery entities, some questions with Maren's parents, and then a new country and characters. I also liked the initial interactions between Maren and Gideon, and Maren and Gavin. I wasn't quite sure who to trust or who Maren should fall for until a little later on in the story. The author did a great job at allowing the suggestion of different directions the story could go.

I did struggle with parts of the story. The romance was pretty much insta-love. I felt it would have been better to have stretched that out quite a bit so it felt more legitimate. Then there was the way Maren becomes obsessed with someone, making her come off as a little psychotic. I had to suspend belief that a being who was a couple hundred years old would fall for a 17-year-old girl (this girl particularly) and act as he did. Add to that the very public fights and other things that aren't quite developed or realistic that just happened with no public reaction or with no preparation or forethought... My analytical mind just wanted more development and things to make more sense.

In the end, was it what I wished for? This was, overall, an enjoyable story. It had its faults, but those who don't mind the insta-love and having to suspend belief in parts will enjoy this one.

Content: Some innuendo and violence.

Source: I received a complimentary copy from the publisher, which did not require a review nor affect it in any way.

If you'd like to find out more about the book, including an interview with the author and a giveaway, check out my tour stop here.

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